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Trump refused phone call with Venezuelan president
President Trump declined to speak with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Friday after the South American leader requested a phone call with him, the White House said in a statement.
"Since the start of this Administration, President Trump has asked that Maduro respect Venezuela's constitution, hold free and fair elections, release political prisoners, cease all human rights violations, and stop oppressing Venezuela's great people," White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement.
"The Maduro regime has refused to heed this call, which has been echoed around the region and the world. Instead Maduro has chosen the path of dictatorship."
"The United States stands with the people of Venezuela in the face of their continued oppression by the Maduro regime," she added. "President Trump will gladly speak with the leader of Venezuela as soon as democracy is restored in that country."
Trump said Friday that he had not ruled out possible military action in Venezuela in response to growing political and social turmoil in the country.
It is not clear if Maduro requested the phone call with Trump before or after the president's remarks. A White House spokeswoman did not immediately return The Hill's request for comment.
Shortly after Trump raised the possibility of a military solution in Venezuela Friday, the Pentagon issued a statement saying that it hadn't received orders regarding Venezuela.
[Source: By Max Greenwood, The Hill, Washington, 11Aug17]
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